It is the time of Advent and the Gospel of Mark tells us to “Be watchful! Be alert!” This is an admonition of HOPE.
Hope is defined in Wikipedia as an optimistic state of mind that is based on an expectation of positive outcomes with respect to events and circumstances in one’s life or the world at large. I want us to focus now on each of our lives and to believe that there are reasons to be thankful and to encourage each other.
Advent can bring profound renewal, peace
A very wise man shared with me that while Christmas celebrates the coming of Jesus Christ’s birth in a manger, its best expectation is the coming of Christ in each of our hearts.
An Advent wreath reminds us that God is with us. The four candles on the wreath symbolize hope, peace, joy and love. As we prepare for Christmas, Advent calls us to be mindful of where we are in our life’s journey – to be still, watch and wait, using this time for more prayer, reflection and preparation. This leads to specific actions as Our Lord invites us to seriously consider, to bring our family members closer together, to heal bruised feelings and relationships, and for Catholics, a time to cleanse our souls through the sacrament of confession of those things that have offended God.
Great hope, peace, joy, and love can abound in our hearts when we do this!
Imagine, if enough people do this, maybe we can find unity in our families and in our country.
Our country needs us now, desperately
It has become clear during the recent months of rioting and civil unrest that each of us who love America must become more outspoken if we are to protect our American heritage.
It is shameful that there is not widespread consensus about the greatness of America.
Repeated complaints are expressed in the media and by certain activist groups that will not even say “ALL lives matter, including those lives in the womb.”
Many in younger generations do not seem to understand how unique America is or why we can proclaim her uniqueness with certainty.
But here is one positive explanation that thinking people can understand and appreciate.
Why it’s not exaggeration to say America is great
Before the adoption of our Declaration of Independence, England and other European countries who had a king or queen believed in what was called the “divine right of kings” – that is, the belief that kings receive their authority from God.
However, the framers of our U.S. Declaration of Independence and U.S. Constitution saw it differently.
The founders of the United States of America wanted to ensure a government that recognized and granted basic human rights to all persons equally. Therefore, the Declaration of Independence states,
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among those are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.”
Later amendments to the U.S. Constitution assured these rights applied to all American citizens. The great “American experiment” has worked and can continue to work, but not in the form of communism, socialism or a relativism that changes America from a Judeo-Christian nation to a godless society.
Progressivism must not be allowed to destroy the basic fundamental principles of our republic. There should be more ways for people to express why they love America as was done in the Epoch Times essay contest.
Coach Lou Holtz inspires in Austin
We are so thankful that the Legatus magazine feature story for October – Respect Life Month, was about the program the St. John Paul II Life Center in Austin, Texas has worked for over four years to create.
The first medical resident started her training at the Vitae Clinic this July. She learned about ways to save human life in the womb instead of actually performing an elective abortion procedure. Our two OB/GYN physicians at the Vitae Clinic are adjunct professors at the University of Texas (UT) Medical School.
Our dream is to take this program to medical residency programs across America.
On October 15 we held the Center’s 10th Anniversary “Life is Beautiful” Gala virtually, with more than 1,000 persons participating from a number of states and at least six foreign countries. Our featured speakers included former NFL star Ben Watson and legendary Coach Lou Holtz.
Coach Holtz gave a very inspirational presentation. He challenged all viewers to 1) do what is right, 2) do the best you can do, and 3) to care about people. He said we all must have a purpose in life and our purpose at the Center is to be the voice of the unborn.
Lou Holtz continued. He described those helping the St. John Paul II Life Center as being heroes and the good people who are doing God’s work. He said we must not be intimidated. He complimented the St. John Paul II Life Center as being unique and special for saving babies’ lives.
In closing, the star Coach remarked that to be happy for a lifetime one must add value to other people’s lives.
We are so thankful that Lou Holtz has added so much value to other people’s lives and also that he has been honored by President Donald Trump with our country’s highest civilian award, the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
Our call is unique, we must each do our part
I am deeply concerned about the future of America. As I have expressed before, there are forces at work seeking to fundamentally change America. Yet, I am optimistic because I know that God is in control.
That said, each of us must do our part—wherever we are—to preserve “the land of the free and the home of the brave.”
I am praying that the people of Georgia on January 5, 2021, vote to re-elect the two current U.S. Senators from Georgia – David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler.
We do not need a situation in which the executive office of President and also both houses of Congress would be controlled by the anti-life Democrats.
Your future, your family’s future, and the fate of America is what is at stake. Let us each do our part to keep America great!
As Mother Teresa said about Christmas, “It’s not how much we give, but how much love we put into giving.”
God bless you and Merry Christmas!
About Catholic business leader, former Texas state representative, business owner and co-founder of the St. John Paul II Life Center, Tim Von Dohlen… Tim and Pat Von Dohlen, put their faith into words in in their book, In Life The Journey Is Everything. Together they recount their adventures, their journey of healing from grief, their discovery of hope after tragedy and ultimately finding love again… A perfect winter read or Christmas gift!
View Articles If you’ve met Tim, you know that his life was shaped by good values that were imparted to him by his parents and he... MORE »